follow Dictionary.com

What's the "een" in Halloween?

postern

[poh-stern, pos-tern] /ˈpoʊ stərn, ˈpɒs tərn/
noun
1.
a back door or gate.
2.
a private entrance or any entrance other than the main one.
adjective
3.
of, pertaining to, or resembling a postern.
Origin
1250-1300
1250-1300; Middle English posterne < Old French, variant of posterle < Late Latin posterula, diminutive of postera back door, noun use of feminine of posterus coming behind. See posterior, -ule
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source
Examples from the web for postern
  • There amongst them shone a luminous star that had led me only last year to the postern-gate.
British Dictionary definitions for postern

postern

/ˈpɒstən/
noun
1.
a back door or gate, esp one that is for private use
adjective
2.
situated at the rear or the side
Word Origin
C13: from Old French posterne, from Late Latin posterula (jānua) a back (entrance), from posterus coming behind; see posterior, posterity
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for postern
n.

late 13c., "back door, private door," from Old French posterne "side or rear gate," earlier posterle, from Late Latin posterula "small back door or gate," diminutive of Latin posterus "that is behind, coming after, subsequent," from post "after" (see post-).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for postern

Some English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for postern

9
11
Scrabble Words With Friends

Quotes with postern